A Futuristic Panda Bear Is The Latest In A Line of Winter Olympic Mascots
According to an interview with CGTN's Sports Scene, Cao asked his then 9-year-old son for input on the final three choices for a mascot, as he knew the final character would need to be "cuddly and attractive to kids". Not mentioned is what the other finalist options were, but choosing an iconically Chinese - and cute - animal like a panda bear was surely a safe bet.
Who is Bing Dwen Dwen?
Bing Dwen Dwen's introduction video showcases the origin story of this cosmically-enhanced panda.
Bing Dwen Dwen (in Mandarin, "ice/purity children/lively") is meant to to embody "the strength and willpower of athletes" as it serves as an "ambassador for winter sports".
The mascot carries a "suit of ice, a heart of gold, and a love for all things winter sports".
The outer shell represents technology and future possibilities with a resemblance to an astronaut's suit. Bing Dwen Dwen also uses the suit to help play in sport. The 'Ice Ribbon' speed skating venue inspired the colored halo around the suit's face.
The heart on the left palm conveys a warm welcome to visitors.
There have been 13 other official Winter Olympic mascots, including Grenoble 1968's originally-unofficial 'Schuss' figure.
Take a look at the previous Winter Olympic mascot characters in the slideshow below, and click on any image to read more background on Olympics.com.
Which one is your favorite?